Medicare Training and Counseling
SHIP, Medicare, and GWAAR
GWAAR's Medicare training and counseling program provides some direct counseling services to Medicare beneficiaries and caregivers as part of the Wisconsin State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP). More significant is the role of GWAAR’s Medicare Trainer and Counselor to help both new and experienced professionals in the aging network access sources of information and training to help older adults with Medicare, Medicaid, and other health insurance concerns.
GWAAR has three main roles related to the Wisconsin SHIP:
- Fiscal Agent for contracts related to various sources of funding that support health insurance outreach and assistance—especially services provided by elder benefit specialists. Awards may include allocations from the basic SHIP funds from the Administration on Community Living (ACL), special grants from CMS or other agencies, and funding to benefit specialist programs coming from the state via revenue to the Office of the Commissioner of Insurance. For fiscal questions, please contact SHIP Director, Rita Cairns, or GWAAR fiscal manager, Deb Mould.
- Training of Professionals. Peg Nugent, Ph.D., current Medicare Trainer and Counselor, collaborates with the Medigap Helpline, Disability Rights Wisconsin, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Region V staff, and others to provide counties and tribes with information, training, and technical assistance around Medicare, Medicaid, and other health insurance for older persons. The For Seniors and Families section of the GWAAR Website under Medicare and Other Health Insurance (new page), is a page that may be a useful link for your customers. Select one of the links at the top of this page for resources to guide professionals who work with Medicare beneficiaries.
- Special Projects are occasionally assigned by the Legal Services Developer/SHIP Director. From 2010 through most of 2012, Peg Nugent coordinated grants for outreach and application assistance to lower income and asset Medicare beneficiaries. The results of excellent efforts statewide have been dramatic. Many best practices were honed to sustain the aging network’s ability to assure that those most vulnerable obtain the assistance and benefits they deserve. Shared resources (new page) created by many different awardees are available to continue these efforts.
For more information, contact Peg Nugent, GWAAR Medicare Trainer and Counselor.